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Ann Farabee: Stressed is desserts spelled backwards

Stressed? Treat yourself – banana pudding, cake, brownies, cookies, doughnuts, milkshakes, chocolate in any form. Whoa…. wait a second. I got off track. Let me try again.

What is stress? Stress is the body’s response to demands and pressures.

I don’t know about you, but my ‘to-do’ list often looks like this:

• Too

• Much

• To

• Do

How does stress affect us? Inability to concentrate. Memory problems. Anxious thoughts. Worry. Unhappiness. Tension. Lowered immunity. Sickness. Eat more/less. (More for me.) Sleep more/less. (Less for me.)

I love these two scriptures that always speak to my heart during stressful times:

• SET YOURSELF: Matthew 5:1 says, “And seeing the multitudes, he went up into a mountain: and when he was set, his disciples came unto him.” Jesus used ‘alone’ time to prepare himself…. He set himself. Sometimes, I just need to get away from the multitude and ‘set’ myself. We can refocus by spending ‘alone’ time with Jesus. Get ready…get set… go.

• SERVE THE SAVIOR: Luke 10: 38-42 tells about two sisters, Mary and Martha, who had a visit from Jesus. Martha was “cumbered about much serving.” She was basically running around the house making sure everything was just right – taking care of the ‘to-do’ list, while Mary sat down at the feet of Jesus and listened to His Word. Martha addressed the situation by asking Jesus if He even cared that her sister had left her and she had to do all the work by herself? Jesus responded that Mary had actually chosen the good part, and that it would not be taken away from her. They were both serving, but Martha was so busy doing good for Jesus, that she neglected spending time with Jesus. (Shh… don’t tell anyone, but there have definitely been times I have related to Martha.)

That’s it…. two different scriptures that tell me to spend more time with my Jesus. For my stress – prayer, praise, and close proximity to Jesus – are my greatest weapons.

When my son was five years old, one day he ran to me crying out that he had been stung. He was holding his fist tightly closed. When I finally convinced him to unclench his hand, several bees flew out. Yes, the pain and fears and tears had already taken control of him, but may have been worsened by him continuing to hold on to his stressor- the bees. I remember thinking, “Why didn’t he just let go?”

Stressed? Try to let go and let God. Choose better – not bitter. Choose fight – not flight. Make the choice to rejoice. This may just be the storm before the calm….

Since stressed is desserts spelled backwards, desserts may or may not help. But, hey…. you could give it a try. One milkshake from Cook-Out won’t hurt you. Tell them I sent you…


Ann Farabee, writer, teacher, and speaker, has taught in Kannapolis City Schools and Mooresville Schools. Read more at annfarabee.com

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